Dangers of Crack Addiction

People who abuse crack are exposed to a number of health risks. These may include:

Changes in the brain – Crack causes massive increases in dopamine, serotonin and norepinephrine, the natural chemicals in the brain that produce good feelings. This euphoric effect drives users to abuse crack in higher doses to achieve the same high. It also interferes with the brain’s ability to produce these chemicals without the use of crack, causing physical and psychological dependence on the drug.

Delirium or intense mental disturbances – Delirium is an intense state of confusion induced by rapid changes in brain function and the autonomic nervous system, which crack abuse can cause. Delirium may include hallucinations and psychosis.

Psychotic episodes or prolonged psychosis – Psychosis is one of the most common symptoms of crack cocaine use and is thought to be linked to changes in the brain chemical dopamine. People who use crack may lose touch with reality and can be plagued with delusions, hallucinations, sleep disturbances, social withdrawal and paranoia.

Depression – Another side effect of crack use is difficulty regulating moods. Crack can deplete the brain’s natural “happy” chemicals, which can result in severe depression.

Violent, erratic behavior – Violence can be a negative consequence of crack use. This may be due to the way the drug affects dopamine and norepinephrine levels in the brain and the psychosis that can accompany crack use. Crack tends to have a higher rate of violence-related incidents than cocaine. The drug also comes with a risk of self-harm if complicated by depression.

Withdrawal from crack can be physically and psychologically harrowing. Repeated use of crack cocaine alters the brain’s chemistry and causes mental and physical damage that requires the help of medical professionals to overcome. Learn about The Ranch crack addiction treatment and our inpatient drug rehab program or call 888-503-0205.


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